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Modern Languages and LinguisticsPart of Humanities

Ruth Walker BA French (Linguistic Studies)

Ruth Walker's Photo

Hi, I'm Ruth Walker and I studied BA French (Linguistic Studies) within Humanities at the University of Southampton.

I love that we get to take a year out, and I am lucky enough to be doing a paid internship in Paris next year! The teaching is brilliant too, and tutors are always on hand and supportive and give a lot of time to you.

Where were you born? Where did you grow up?

Nottingham

What made you decide to study modern languages?

I really enjoyed French at school, and have always loved French culture when going on holiday to France. I had to do German at school and didn’t really like it, but I took Latin and English Language at college and loved it! That’s why I chose to do linguistics as part of my degree as it means I get to incorporate what I had already studied at college. I also liked the idea of getting to go abroad for a year as part of my degree!

Tell us more about the areas that you are now specialising in …

I took Italian stages one and two in first year and really loved it! It was like being back at school; learning a new language from scratch again with textbooks and listening songs! I regret not taking it on for second year, but I wanted to focus on French since I didn’t seem to be learning as much French as I was Italian!

Are you enjoying your studies? What do you like most about your degree programme?

I really do enjoy my studies. There is a lot of work but that’s obviously part of doing a degree! I love that we get to take a year out, and I am lucky enough to be doing a paid internship in Paris next year! The teaching is brilliant too, and tutors are always on hand and supportive and give a lot of time to you.

What are your plans for your year abroad? How do you think this year will help you in the future?

I have an internship at HEC Paris for ten months, working in the library. It will greatly improve my spoken French (I hope!) and I will also develop my translation and interpreting skills.

Do you get on well with the academic staff?

Yes, they are always helpful and efficient.

What’s the best thing about living and studying in Southampton?

The campus and its facilities, and the many activities you can get involved in.

What has been your favourite moment so far?

Being involved with the Showstoppers and Theatre group shows, particularly the 24h show, and general Freshers moments!

How were the first few weeks at Uni? Was it easy to settle into your studies, make friends etc.?

Personally I found it hard settling down and being in a new environment with total strangers. However, you just have to go for it and now I have some incredible friends. The first few weeks at uni are the best of your life, but I didn’t enjoy it! I think I just focused too much on work than making friends, which isn’t a bad thing but not really necessary for first year! As long as you join societies you get to meet people who share your interests, also try to do as much as you can with your halls friends to bond with them.

What are you planning to do after graduating? What steps have you taken towards achieving this?

I plan to take a Masters in Interpreting/Translation and then work abroad. I have attended a languages career day at Westminster which was brilliant.

Do you have any advice for people considering studying Modern Languages at Southampton?

Come here! The languages department is very good and there are plenty of resources, even a specialised languages resource centre and the help is always there. Southampton is ranked high in most leagues, especially the languages department and the humanities campus is very nice and relaxed; an enjoyable environment to work in. Year abroad opportunities are also fantastic.

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